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Poorna from Poorna

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Poorna from Poorna: Is that possible?
पूर्णस्य पूर्णमादाय पूर्णमेवावशिष्यते- declares the second line of one Shanti Mantra1. This Shanti Mantra is associated with the Svetasvatara2 and Isha Upanishads3 . In English, the mantra translates to: from the poorna (पूर्ण) when when you take out poorna, you are left with poorna. Poorna is a Sanskrit word, which is usually roughly translated as ‘whole’. In the context of the Shanti Mantra, translators2,3 have interpreted poorna to be a synonym for Brahman (ब्रह्मन्) and the statement to imply that “Brahman is still full, although the whole universe has come out of it”2.
Let us take a different route and pretend that we do not know what this statement or the word poorna implies. Instead, we translate the shloka into the following equation: 𝑥-𝑥 = 𝑥, where 𝑥 is this entity to be determined. The Shanti Mantra declares that there exists an entity called poorna that satisfies this algebraic equation. Keeping with our pretense of not knowing wh…

The Revival of Tech GC

The Revival of Tech GC
(Part II; Part I - Assassination of Tech GC)
"Tech GC is pointless. R&D is a bad investment”, asserted Kuber1 sliding back into his chair after wrapping his fingers around a clutch of spicy pakodas at Café Leopold. It was the end of 2007, and I was back in India during the winter break and reminiscing about our lives at KGP2. I suddenly felt transported back to early KGP days when I was striving for my techie dreams. This was the prevalent wisdom of its time. It was soc-n-cult and hall-panti-is-everything world of KGP of early 2000s. It was how to game saboon-tel-beedi and bahi-khata jobs, which got the creative juices running. There were individual brilliances and activities, but at a cultural level, it was shocking cynicism from junta. Even sundry tech clubs were being used to gain entry into saboon-tel-beedi jobs! While I struggled to convince others about the need for a student driven ecosystem of techie events, it proved difficult to attract others.…

The assassination of TECH GC

The assassination of TECH GC  (Part I; Part II - The Revival of Tech GC)
Yeh batane se pehle tu mar kyun nahi gaaya” said Ranajay disconnecting promptly. We never talked about it again. He was reacting to news I had just delivered to him – KGP’s Tech GC1 now had events called ‘Biz Quiz’ and ‘Ad Design’. 
Why did he react like that? Allow me to step back a little, 17 years to be precise. It was July 2000, when I ran into Ranajay outside the majestic old building on the hallowed grounds of what we lovingly refer to as KGP. Fresh from JEE, we were both first year undergraduate students in the Mechanical Engineering Department2. KGP underwent many changes during this year, perhaps more than in any year since it was established. The campus was preparing for its golden jubilee celebrations and receiving millions of dollars in donations from generous IIT alumni3. The campus was abuzz with construction as LAN cables were being laid to accommodate the new subsidized computers that were arriving…